Check Your Credit Score Before Buying 

Young Man checking Credit Score on Computer before buying car

Shopping for a new ride can be an exciting time for car buyers — from visiting the dealership and taking your soon-to-be car for a quick test spin, to driving off the lot in your new ride. But before you purchase a vehicle, it may be a good idea to check your credit score.

A credit score is a three-digit number based on information from your credit report, giving finance companies and lenders an idea of your credit history. Your credit score is used by many creditors to make a decision on whether to offer you an auto loan, home mortgage, credit card, or other type of credit. It may also be a factor in determining the interest rate you’ll receive.

You can have more than one credit score because finance companies and banks use different scores for different products. In addition, there are several credit scoring formulas, and information can come from different credit reporting sources. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the score you receive from any source will depend on the data used to calculate it, and the score may be different depending on the scoring formula, the source of your credit history and even the day when it was calculated.

Regardless of whether you have good or bad credit, it’s helpful to review your credit report before purchasing a vehicle. Knowing your credit score in advance can improve your car buying experience because you know what to expect when trying to get a loan or financing for a vehicle.

You have access to one free credit report from each of the big three credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — every 12 months, by visiting or calling 877-322-8228. If you

If you currently have bad credit or no credit, and need help getting approved for financing, a dealer enrolled with Credit Acceptance can assist you.